Venue: Cabaret Tent
Reviewer: Glen Pearce
A background in advertising and psychology may seem to be a strange onefor a career on stage, but Doug Segal uses skills gained in both to impressive effect in this exploration into the power of mind reading.
Unlike many performers, Segal promises to teach us the secrets of mind reading. It’s only partly true, however. We may get a hand out at the end of a show on how to baffle and amaze our friends but the majority of his act remains an impressive mystery.
Apparently, one of the most common questions he is asked is can he predict the lottery. As he points out, he is performing in a tent in Suffolk on a Friday morning. It’s a slight ruse though as he opening ‘trick’ does involve getting six random members of the audience to each pick a number from 1-49 and then produces a lottery ticket for tonight’s draw with those exact numbers.
Segal is a master in working his audience, we may be being lead down certain paths but his engaging style, witty comedy and self deprecation is impossible not to warm to.
As the mind reading becomes more and more impressive, we’re left in both awe and wonderment about how these feats are performed. Segal gives us hints and promises to reveal all, but the reveal is to a single member of the audience, taught to read the minds of three fellow audience members.
It’s showmanship Barnum would be proud of and an act that entertains as well as provides plenty to think about.